Acclamation Reigns Supreme
The Del Mar Racecourse in California is the host of the annual running of the Pacific Classic Stakes, which is an event for horses that are three years old, or older. It was inaugurated in 1991, and has a purse amount of $1 million. This is one of the most anticipated races of the year, and before this year’s event, which was held on Saturday, 27 August 2011, all involved in the career of Acclamation were confident that he was ready to make an impact on the Pacific Classic Stakes. The race is especially important as it forms part of the Breeders’ Cup Challenge, which means that the winner of the race is automatically entered into the Breeders’ Cup Classic, an event that is hosted at Oak Tree Racecourse.
Pete Hilvers is the co-owner of Acclamation, a horse that has been quite a late bloomer, as now at the age of five he beginning to show his true potential. In the last two years he has secured seven victories and his winnings before the Pacific Classic Stakes were standing at $938 000. Hilvers has been managing the Old English Ranchero for about thirty years, and together with his wife's parents, Ellwood and Judy Johnson, they bred Acclamation at Sanger, where Accclamation’s dam, grand dam, and great grand dam were all bred before.
In his preparation for the Pacific Classic Stakes at Del Mar, Acclamation has managed to secure two consecutive Grade 1 victories, which included the Eddie Read Stakes that took place in July. Acclamation has proved to be extremely comfortable on turf. Patrick Valenzuela was partnered with this magnificent horse for the Pacific Classic Stakes. Just after they left the starting gates, Acclamation took the leading position and began to set the pace for the race. He was followed by Game On Dude and Twirling Candy.
With only half a mile remaining, Acclamation was still in the lead and was running on the rail. Acclamation's trainer, Don Warren, could only watch as Game On Dude and Twirling Candy remained on his tail, but at the final turn, Twirling Candy made a daring move, and went wide, but was not able to keep up to Acclamation, widening his lead with every stride. Game On Dude could not unfortunately keep up with the two front runners, leading to Acclamation winning the Pacific Classic Stakes convincingly, followed home by Twirling Candy in second, then Stately Victor, Game On Dude, Quindici Man, Tres Boraachos, Don Cavallo, Jeranimo and Setsuko. Acclamation delivered a superb performance and will now be moving towards the Breeders' Cup Classic.